NEWLY-trained coaches who escaped a life of crime to find a job through sport passed on their new skills to Ealing youngsters.
Eight coaches from the Lord’s Taverners Street Elite programme visited Gurnell Leisure Centre, West Ealing on Wednesday last week.
The sessions were led by eight young people aged 17 to 24 who themselves had not been in education, employment or training (NEETs).
After picking up new qualifications in cricket, rugby or football, the young coaches have been working on housing estates across the capital to pass on their experiences and encourage other youngsters, like themselves, to escape violent gang culture.
Si Ledwith, leader of the Cricket for Change campaign, said: “The boys come from a range of backgrounds. Some were from the gang culture and had been in gangs, some were young offenders who had been in prison and others were just struggling at college. They talked to young people who may be at risk of going down the wrong path and act as role models. They’re essentially acting as youth workers talking to them from their experiences to stop others doing what they may have done.”
Three coaches originally from Ealing could not attend because they managed to find full time jobs through the programme.